I love designing my own graphics. That’s definitely no secret. I make my Pinterest graphics, blog post photos and my banner was also created by myself… I love creating something and being able to look at the end product and think that I put it together.
And so, hopefully, by the end of this post, I’ll have given you the tools you need to be able to create your own as well!
I live for Canva. I cannot rave about it enough. I use it for my blog graphics, I’ve used it for professional projects, events and even for university coursework! You can basically create everything using Canva. I used to use it for my blog header, all of my graphics are created using it… even my Apple Music playlists have covers that I’ve designed using Canva!
You can have a free account and do almost everything you need, they have preset dimensions for social media posts and printable items so you can see the exact sizing beforehand, it comes with templates and freebies to make it ridiculously easy to create banners, social media posts… I’ve even made my cv using Canva!
If you wanted to upgrade and get Canva for a business, it’s $12.95. Which I think is pretty reasonable given how much you can do using it! If you have a small team, then you might be ok sticking to the free version – I had a team of 3 that stuck to the free version before and that worked fine for us!
I never understood VSCO before, I used to just take my blog and Instagram photos using filters on an app called CandyCam. I still love that app and still use it occasionally, but I’ve now fallen in love with VSCO. I found a ton of preset filters on VSCO that you can create using their instructions (if you go into the app, you can just slide the sliders following their instructions – it’s super easy but more than happy to make a video if it seems complicated!) I saved my favourite one, and now my Instagram routine is ridiculously easy! Forget the hours I used to spend on the liquify tool, using XiuXiu Meitu (a Chinese photoshop program) and editing everything to death!
Now I just take a photo on the default camera app, choose my lighting and everything… and then pop it through VSCO using my preset filter, and then it goes straight to Instagram! All of my current feed uses the same filter, and I’m currently going through deleting all of the ones that don’t fit this new theme.
I created an Instagram board on Pinterest where I’ve put some of my favourite preset filters, which you can check out here:
This one is a little more difficult to use and so I placed it last on the list, so you can check it out after you’ve got the basics of the other two! I did need to watch some YouTube tutorials to work out GIMP and get comfortable with it… but it’s a lifesaver once you realise there are some features you can’t use in Canva. For example, I have a rose gold foil colour as my blog banner font. I couldn’t create this colour in Canva. I didn’t want to buy Photoshop to just create this banner, I love DIYing my blog… so I wanted to create it myself rather than commissioning someone else to do it! And so I managed to find a few tutorials on YouTube on how to add textures to fonts, and it was so simple after I got the hang of it!
It does take a little more effort compared to the others, but for headers and other graphics you’re using over and over, I think it’s worth it! I wouldn’t use it for my Pinterest graphics because I love Canva for the basic tasks. But GIMP fills all the design gaps I have, and I now don’t need to buy Photoshop!
If you’d like to create your own blog graphics using GIMP, I’ve created a Blog Resource dump board where you can grab freebies like fonts, watercolour swashes and icons to add!
I wasn’t sponsored by any of the services in this post, I just love using them and love helping you all DIY your own blogs. Have a lovely day and catch you all next time!